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Published author, small business owner and skeptical consumer D. Alan Carter has personally developed over 50 websites. Carter brings this practical experience to bear on his reviews of some of the more popular website hosts... including BigCommerce.

BigCommerce Review | Company's Home Page

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"Has anyone used BigCommerce?"
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BigCommerce Review

Below, my take on the popular website hosting service BigCommerce. Specifically, pros & cons and my recommendation. Also, Pricing Points, Fast Facts, details from Better Business Bureau reports, and Complaints Summary. --D. Alan Carter

BigCommerce.com Review...
Pros & Cons, Recommendation
About BigCommerce...
Pricing Points, Fast Facts, BBB, Complaints

Looking to sell tangible products, digital downloads or services on the Web? You may like what you're about to read. BigCommerce is a leading e-commerce platform for small and medium-size businesses. The company claims they are "...the easiest way to sell your products online and reach thousands of new customers both locally and around the world." They may be right, though they're not without competition.

The Pros

Relatively painless website creation. Choose from over 100 design themes or templates for your store. Customizing is easy with drag-and-drop capabilities and a WYSIWYG editor. For code monkeys, they give you access to the storefront's HTML/CSS files so you can tinker at will.

Store management is comprehensive and baked into the software. Your subscription includes order processing features, automatic inventory updating and syncing, returns system, pre-order and backorder support. And their upcoming iPhone app will let you manage your store from your phone.
Built-in SEO features--from tableless themes to auto-generated sitemaps. For getting your products ranked highly in search engines without having to hire a white-hat guru.

Automatic backups are provided, and they take place multiple times daily. And everything is backed up: orders, products, photos, customer records, everything.

All Bigcommerce stores are automatically PCI (Payment Card Industry) compliant, ensuring a secure environment for credit card transactions.
Your store stays open. Average uptime is 99.994%, well above the average for the average.
No contracts to sign. Payments are month by month, and you can cancel at any time.
Human tech support is available 24x7x365.

The Cons

While promotional support is extensive (i.e. trackable coupon codes, limited time promotions, gift certificates, free or discounted shipping, etc.), there is currently no provision for daily deals or a customer loyalty program. I'd like to see both, but there's a good chance I'm nitpicking.
Software is not optimized for managing multiple storefronts from one administration panel. If you're looking to manage multiple online stores, you should look elsewhere.

The Wrap Up

BigCommerce is a true all-in-one e-commerce platform -- from domain name selection and web hosting to a mobile-optimized store built for traffic. I like the fact that the features are baked into the software and not nickle-and-diming you as add-ons; shopping cart, product catalog, CRM, email accounts, marketing tools, analytical reporting, and so on--it's all in there.

And unlike Yahoo Merchant Solutions, there are no transaction fees; you pay the monthly subscription, and that's it.  

If you need an online store, want it fully functional, and want to minimize your aggravation with store creation and management, I recommend BigCommerce. Give the free trial a run for it's money. It's a fully functional 15-day free trial. There's no obligation to continue, and you don't need a credit card to sign up.

Go to...

BigCommerce.com

Best of luck,
D. Alan Carter

Pricing Points:
Sell up to 100 Products... Sell up to 500 Products...
$24.95/month $39.95/month
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Fast Facts:
Company founded in 2009.

Parent company: Interspire, Inc., a developer of web-based software (i.e. website publishing, email marketing, knowledge management, etc.). BigCommerce, formerly Interspire Shopping Cart, is their hosted e-commerce software product.

Contact Information:

Mailing Address for BigCommerce:
2711 West Anderson Lane, Austin, TX 78757

Mailing Address for Interspire:
Level 4, 91 Reservoir Street, Surry Hills 2010 NSW Australia

Operates via SaaS ("software as a service"). The company's e-commerce software is accessible to businesses as a web-based service provided on monthly or yearly subscription plans. Hosting is included.

Pricing: Company offers 5 tiers of service, each plan differentiated by the number of products you can sell, the number of staff logins you need, and amount of server storage. All service plans offer the same site builder.

Currently serving over 30,600 hosted, online stores representing 25 industries in over 65 countries.

Learn about: E-commerce, Online Shopping and Shopping Cart Systems.
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Better Business Bureau:
"B+" on a scale of A+ to F.

A BBB Accredited Business since 02/05/2010.

Link to the company's BBB Business Review.

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Complaints:

17 complaints have been filed with the BBB in the past 3 years. That number was the sole contributor to lowering of the rating from the BBB, while at the same time, the company's response to those 17 complaints contributed to the raising of the BBB rating.

The BBB complaints break down into 3 categories:

  1. Billing/Collection Issues
  2. Problems with Product/Service
  3. Advertising/Sales Issues
We found few complaints posted on Internet forums. One site, RipoffReport.com, had a couple dating back to 2010.

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